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I just bought this... help

  1. bananapeanut Mar 2, 2023

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    Don't bother. OP ran for the hills once he figured it out. You'll never hear from him again. Still waiting for Aldrin's watch to show up. That would be something too.
     
    Edited Mar 2, 2023
  2. pdxleaf ... Mar 2, 2023

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    No guilt needed.

    This is a prototype NASA owned one of 56 watches. Most of us would shit our pants just to wear it on our wrist for a day. If someone doesn't understand or appreciate the significance of this watch then that's on them. Is it someone elses responsibility to teach them to respect the history, their history? Hell no. In this age where everything is available on the internet, you must be too lazy or uncaring to do the minimal research, that's on you. What's more, if you only care about how much money you can make ( or didn't make because you sold it too cheap), no mercy. You didn't deserve the watch. People will pay 250k to 500k for this watch, maybe more. Some might only care about the money. I wouldn't know because I don't have that to spend. But they at least hold the watch in some great value, enough to drop real cash. As a nerdy fan of space and speedmasters, it almost feels insulting to sell something like this cheap. Especially if it was family.

    Buy him a beer. Maybe he'll appreciate his Grandfather more now.
     
  3. DoctorEvil Mar 2, 2023

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    YYTIN and Dan S like this.
  4. DoctorEvil Mar 2, 2023

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    A warning from RJ:
    Screenshot_20230302-183658~2.png
    https://www.fratellowatches.com/omega-speedmaster-alaska-iii-145-022/

    Apparently, the watch that was sold at Phillips for $187,500 was not part of this initial batch of 56 watches sold to NASA. It did not have the 4 digit serial number. Hence, it was not government property and therefore was legal to sell on the open market.

    If I were the OP, I'd tread warily until I can determine the provenance of the watch more fully.
     
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  5. COYI Mar 2, 2023

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    The watch would be worth more with some provenance and a story. I hope we get to find out more about the seller's grandfather and his connection to NASA; whether he worked there or someone he knew did and gifted/sold the watch to him.
     
  6. janice&fred Mar 2, 2023

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    I'm surprised it took 5 pages before this came up.

    My sentiment exactly. The OP bought the watch fair and square.
     
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  7. gatorcpa ΩF InvestiGator Staff Member Mar 2, 2023

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    An example of what the US Government will do to recover property it thinks belongs to them:

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/1933_double_eagle

    However, there have been thousands of pattern and prototype coins made at the US Mint over the last 200 years or so. These trade regularly and the federal government has not gone after any of them.

    At this point, I think the OP should be consulting with an attorney before moving in any direction with this watch. Good luck getting insurance on it too.
    gatorcpa
     
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  8. gbesq Mar 2, 2023

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    Assuming that the watch was government property, and that the grandfather procured the watch directly from NASA, what this really comes down to is whether the seller’s grandfather acquired the watch through official channels with NASA’s consent, whether the official who gave the consent had the authority to do so, whether that consent is documented in writing, and whether the consent, if any, was subject to restrictions on the subsequent transfer or sale of the watch. It strikes me as virtually impossible to answer these questions without contacting NASA and making an inquiry. Whether it's watches or other government owned property, never underestimate the ability of the government to make bad financial decisions. At the end of WWII, the government sold surplus P-51 Mustangs, perhaps the best combat fighter of the war, for $1,500. If you want one today, they are still available from private owners. Depending on condition, be prepared to fork over anywhere between 1.7 to 4.5 million.
    [​IMG]
    Photo credit: Plane & Pilot Magazine
     
    Edited Mar 2, 2023
  9. Timetron Mar 2, 2023

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    Kind of scary overreach... :(
     
    Edited Mar 2, 2023
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  10. vintage hab Mar 2, 2023

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    I don't think it's overreach: the double eagle coins were stolen. If you had your watch collection stolen, you would want it returned if they were found years later.
    But the OP's watch is different: we don't know the provenance. How the grandfather got it is the key to the situation.
     
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  11. janice&fred Mar 2, 2023

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    The OP got nothin to worry about anymore. I bought the watch from him via PM for $1500 and if Uncle Sam wants it back I'll just say I sold it at a flea market for $1550. If some carload of guys wearing black come to the house looking for it I'll have it hidden where the sun don't shine. No squealing. That's just between us ok? :D
     
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  12. Aroxx Sets his watch Mar 2, 2023

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    You know they look there right? ;)

    I’d go with a boating incident. Deep sea fishing and it fell off in the water. I lost all my firearms in a boating incident years ago. Damn shame.
     
  13. gatorcpa ΩF InvestiGator Staff Member Mar 2, 2023

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    I get the sarcasm there, but a public forum is not the place to be advocating breaking the law, be it civil law or criminal law.
    gatorcpa
     
  14. janice&fred Mar 2, 2023

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    How about I say an alligator ate it? After all we are in Florida. :D
     
  15. gbesq Mar 2, 2023

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    Which is why playing golf in Florida is as much of an adventure as a sport.
    [​IMG]
    Photo credit: foxsports.com
     
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  16. Timetron Mar 2, 2023

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    I am not saying the government did not have the right to recuperate it's property, but what I define as scary overreach is the perpetuation in time of the intent to recover it.
     
  17. Aroxx Sets his watch Mar 2, 2023

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    Fred can no longer wear a watch on both wrists…

    F2B088A7-92FF-4FDC-A94B-D1651BDF2B0B.jpeg
     
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  18. pdxleaf ... Mar 2, 2023

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    Yes and no. Agree that there should be some consideration for the circumstances.

    One thing to consider when we say something belongs to the government, we are saying it belongs to us, the taxpayers. The strict (and seemingly overstrict at times) rules are in recognition that all property was purchased by taxpayer money and needs to be used for the benefit of us all. Yes, there are abuses and misuses. But it's a good princilple.

    Still, hell hath no fury like some well meaning civil servant.
     
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  19. SpeedyPhill Founder Of Aussie Cricket Blog Mark Waugh Universe Mar 2, 2023

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    Again an interesting topic :coffee:
    AFAIK military watches needed to be returned to the supply/logistics in order to be "decommissioned"... in practice most were destroyed, while nowadays as with other "non-lethal" military equipment these could be sold as military surplus.
    About NASA watches, we all heard the story of astronaut chief Donald Deke Slayton threatening the astronauts to be put on non-flight status prohibiting them of flying NASA T-38 jets as long as they didn't return their NASA-issued watches.
    These Speedmaster Alaska III radial dial versions date from the space shuttle project (1978 & 1985 deliveries but used between 1981 and 1995).
    Donald Slayton retired in 1980, consulted untill February 1982, but I guess NASA-issued watches still had to be returned as I once asked a NASA astronaut through snail mail back in 1999:
    (scan: MoonwatchUniverse)
    .
    Walker_MoonwatchUniverse.jpg
     
  20. Timetron Mar 2, 2023

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    Let's say Government recovers this watch (God forbid). One thing the Government could do to benefit all of us, would be exhibiting the watch in a Museum and sending us free invitations with 1 minute of wrist time included. ::rimshot::
     
    Edited Mar 2, 2023
    pdxleaf likes this.